Ethiopia - Study on landscape restoration and reduction of erosion in the catchment area of Lake Abaya and Lake Chamo

The mountainous catchment area of Lake Abaya and Lake Chamo is characterized by intensive land use, especially through grazing and agriculture. In some parts of the area the forest cover is being reduced by 50 % in the last 40 years for creating agricultural sites and rangelands for livestock. Due to the high land use pressure huge parts of the area are overgrazed. The results are increasing rates of erosion on the slopes and sedimentation and siltation of the lakes. Soil material is not kept by the roots of trees, hedges and grasses but removed by wind and rainfall and transported down the slope into the lakes. The water quality decreases trough sedimentation and nutrient input and endangers the fish populations in the lake and the fresh water supply for the population.


Succow Foundation and project partners from Arba Minch University elaborated a concept for landscape restoration and reduction of erosion, in order to prevent the further sedimentation and devastation of the lake ecosystems. The objective was to establish a sustainable land use planning with special attention to the sites of highest degradation and land use pressure. It requires an improvement of the rangeland management by regulating the grazing period and number of livestock per area in consultation with the pastoralists. The livelihood of the pastoralists is to be supported and the valuable ecosystems and natural resources are to preserved. In the project frame also concrete sites were identified for afforestation and planting of hedges or strong grasses in order to prevent erosion.


The project was financed by the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).



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Project coordination:

Renée Moreaux, renee.moreaux(at)